I'm Jack Huber, author, blogger, and photographer... I'd like to become your favorite mystery writer! Ask me anything!

Jack Huber
Jun 13, 2018

I have written 5 mystery novels in the Pat Ruger Series.  You can find them at Ruger100.huberville.comAlso, you can get Book 1 ("For Hire") FREE by signing up for my newsletter:  jackhuber.com/subscribe.html.

Don't forget to leave a review!

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How many more books of the Pat Ruger series do you want to do? Have you planned a finale for the saga?
Jun 19, 3:13AM EDT0

I had originally planned to do six, with the last one having Pat Ruger full-time on the road in an RV.  I'm currently writing that sixth book but no longer want to end the series there.  I'm going to continue for at least two more books and will review the readership, etc., at that time.  I am considering writing a sci-fi novel next, and then return to the mystery series.

Jun 19, 8:21AM EDT0
What other writing engagements do you have besides your book and poetry? Do you write for journals or magazines?
Jun 18, 8:52PM EDT0

Just my own blog posts (www.jackhuber.com).  I was a staff writer for the online magazine, Poetic Monthly, but that was several years ago.

Jun 18, 8:59PM EDT0
How hard is it to establish and maintain a career in fiction writing?
Jun 18, 6:02PM EDT0

Very.  I've been writing fiction for 5 years and retirement from my day job is the only reason I can write full-time now.  I did hire a publicist this year and she has helped tremendously with my marketing efforts.

Jun 18, 7:54PM EDT0
What factors are important to you when choosing the covers of your books? How do you go about this process?
Jun 17, 8:06PM EDT0

I struggled with covers for quite a while and several best-selling authors suggested I hire a professional cover artist. One of them referred me to his artist, Elizabeth Mackey, who has designed some great book covers for me. Now I often get awesome compliments on them.

Jun 17, 9:13PM EDT0
Where can one find your poetry books?
Jun 17, 6:52AM EDT0

You can find all of my books on my Amazon page at amazon.com/author/jackhuber or my website at www.jackhuber.com

Jun 17, 9:47AM EDT0
If you were forced to live the rest of your life as one of your characters who would it be and what are the reasons for your choice?
Jun 15, 7:29AM EDT0

Even though the character is not based on me, nothing like me, really, I do relate somewhat to Pat Ruger and would consider living my life as him.  Pat has a good heart and is my kind of reluctent hero I would aspire to be.

Jun 15, 9:41AM EDT0
If you were to blurb your most recent book, what would you write?
Jun 15, 6:34AM EDT0

A local poet is killed and since he was a friend of Pat's girlfriend, he decides to lend his expertise to solving the murder. His investigation brings him to the CIA, who recruits him to continue his investigation in Seattle. There he finds an international connection and when his protege is kidnapped, Pat must rescue him before the captors take him to Asia, never to be seen again.

Jun 15, 9:39AM EDT0
Do you base your characters in real people? Have you ever base a character in someone you know
Jun 15, 5:07AM EDT0

Ocassionally I have a character that is based on a look or personality of a real person, however not anyone I personally know.  Lola, for example, was based loossely on Rosie Perez.  This sometimes helps me keep the actions and dialog on point with their personality.  Most of the characters, however, are composites of several people I've met or have seen, or simply invented by me.

Jun 15, 9:36AM EDT0
What would you like to see more/less of in the mystery genre?
Jun 14, 10:42PM EDT0

I'd like to see the genre consolidate rather than being fragmented into different kinds of mysteries, i.e. cozies, crime, police procedurals, etc.  It's difficult enough to find readers without segmenting them away from so many good books.

Jun 15, 9:32AM EDT0
Does writing energize or exhaust you? How does it make you feel?
Jun 14, 9:14PM EDT0

Neither, really.  It's satisfying to get the words out of my head and onto the manuscript, but I do get mentally tired after about 3 hoiurs of writing in one session.

Jun 15, 9:30AM EDT0
What is your all time favorite book and what is it about the book that you prefer?
Jun 14, 3:02AM EDT0

There's no one book that stands out.  I loved the Foundation Series, and most of Asomov's work, White Plague and The Dosadi Experiment (2nd of a 3-book series) by Frank Herbert, Time Enough for Love by Robert A. Heinlein, and The New Centuions and The Onion Field by Joseph Wambaugh.  All but the Foundation series had significant lead characters that interested me.

Jun 14, 8:21AM EDT0
How would you describe your main character, Pat Ruger? Who is he? What drives him?
Jun 13, 5:18PM EDT0

It's difficult to describe him in a short answer.  He evolves quite a bit in the book series.  Basically he is a middle-aged ex-cop who had to cope with his wife's passing.  He is a good man who is wise to the ways of the city and skeptical of higher government officials.  He is a reluctant hero, and would rather not be faced with that kind of praise.

Jun 13, 6:01PM EDT0
Was it always your intent to create a mystery saga or did you think about this idea after you published your first novel? How did you go about the saga's development?
Jun 13, 4:26PM EDT0

I had it in mind but wasn't sure the first book would be good enough to warrant a sequel, let alone a series.  The feedback from everyone told me to continue after the first book was released.

Jun 13, 5:11PM EDT0
Do you enjoy using narrative devices like flashbacks or multiple voices in telling the story? What are your reasons for this?
Jun 13, 3:55PM EDT0

I really enjoy writing in first person for my mysteries, so there aren't multiple voices.  I can't speak for what I might do when I tackle my first sci-fi... I don't use flashbacks at all, mostly because my stories are told in past tense already.

Jun 13, 4:02PM EDT0
How do you keep your plots unpredictable without sacrificing plausibility?
Jun 13, 11:57AM EDT0

That's a difficult question to answer.  Some readers might disagree that my plots are plausible... I hope they are, but let's face it, this isn't the news and it's not a story based on facts.  I really focus on the characters and try to be true to their nature in any given situation.  The other thing is that I believe in coincidences and have no problem having them be part of my story.

Jun 13, 12:41PM EDT0
Are you currently writing anything new? If yes, when are you planning to release your latest book and how is it different and similar to your previous work?
Jun 13, 10:39AM EDT0

I am writing the 6th book in my Pat Ruger Mystery Series, which I will hopefully complete and publish by the end of summer.  One difference with this book is the the main character has moved into a motorhome to tour the country.  BTW, that plotline was developed well before my recent move into my own RV...

Jun 13, 10:48AM EDT0
Did you self-publish your books or did you go to a traditional publisher? What made you choose either?
Jun 13, 10:18AM EDT0

With the poetry market so weak, publishers weren't even accepting proposals for it, so I learned how to self-publish for them.  Once I wrote a novel I tried to get a traditional publisher without any luck.  I couldn't even get an agent to look atr my work.  There are literally millions of people writing and trying to get published around the world and it's like hitting the lottery if someone picks you up.  So, the choice to self-publish was made for me, and I already knew how to do it.

Jun 13, 10:45AM EDT0
How long on average does it take you to write a book? Do you use a computer or a typewriter? How many hours a day do you write when you are working on a project?
Jun 13, 10:16AM EDT0

Before I retired, I wrote my books almost entirely on lunch hours at work.  Now I'm trying to spend 3-4 hours per day just writing (plus marketing, which is also time consuming).  One of my books took only 4 months to write and another took 18, so there is no real average duration.  It takes what it takes.  I spent over 30 years in the IT industry, so obviously I used a computer.  I also self-publish on Amazon and CreateSpace, so a computer is required for those tasks.

Jun 13, 10:38AM EDT0
How do you develop characters? How do you make your stories feel like they are set in Colorado?
Jun 13, 9:11AM EDT0

How much depth I create in a character realy depends on s) whether they are going to be reocurring and b) how much depth I need.  Sometimes less is more.  Since i lived in Colorado and explored the entire state over 6 years there, and visited Wyoming quite a bit, it has been easy to use Denver and the surrounding areas as settings.

Jun 13, 10:32AM EDT0
How different was the process of writing your first novel against the process of writing your latest one? What has changed for you?
Jun 13, 6:08AM EDT0

After two failed attempts to write a novel, I let my characters dictate the flow and some of the plot in my first completed manuscript. THis led to some surprising twists I hadn't expected.  Since I am now writing a series and know the main characters well, I storyboard the plot and summarize chapters before beginning to write Chapter 1.  My writing has improved, I'm told, with each book.

Jun 13, 8:43AM EDT0
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